Preacher Cookies are naturally gluten free no-bake cookies loaded with chocolate, oats, and a touch of peanut butter for the perfect emergency sweet fix. These cookies are so quick and easy, they can be whipped up in minutes when an unexpected guest, or preacher, arrives at your door!
It's best to have your ingredients measured out and prepared beforehand. Place the sugar, cocoa powder, butter, milk, and salt in a medium saucepan. Measure out the peanut butter, quick oats, and vanilla. Line two baking sheets with parchment or wax paper and set aside.
Bring the sugar / butter mixture to a full boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Once it begins to boil, cook and stir constantly for 1 minute. It's best to set a timer to be very precise so they cookies set properly.
Immediately remove the mixture from the heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla until smooth. Stir in oats.
Drop cookies by 1 ½-2 tablespoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets. To do this quickly and evenly, use a medium cookie scoop. Set aside for 15-20 minutes to cool and harden.
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Frequently asked questions:
Why didn't they harden?
They fail to harden when the mixture hasn't boiled long enough. Typically I cook the butter / sugar mixture about 5 seconds over just to be sure they set up. Do not cook over that, though, or the cookies will become dry and crumbly.To ensure they harden, first have the mixture come to a full, rolling boil over medium heat. Set a timer for 1 minute and then remove from the heat. Like peanut brittle, the timing is essential for having the cookies set properly. If they don't harden, after cooling completely, either refrigerate or freeze them to set them up. They will have to be stored in the fridge or freezer to stay firm, though. They may be enjoyed cold and are still amazing!
dairy free / vegan adaptations
Substitute dairy free milk, such as almond milk, and use plant-based butter, such as Earth Balance butter sticks. Omit the salt from the recipe if using vegan butter because it tends to be a little saltier than traditional butter.
Do I have to add peanut butter?
No. You can also enjoy preacher cookies without peanut butter. Simply leave it out and continue with the recipe.On the other hand, you can also add more peanut butter if you are looking for a more pronounced peanut butter taste. Adding 1/3 cup gives a more subtle hint of peanut butter, but up to 2/3 cup may be added.
What else can be added?
Coconut: Omit the peanut butter and add 1/2 cup shredded coconut.
Mocha: Add 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder to the cocoa powder.
Double Chocolate: When adding the oats and peanut butter, stir in up to 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips. They will harden as the mixture cools, giving a more robust chocolate taste.
Sweet & Salty: Before the cookies harden sprinkle tops with flaky sea salt.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature up to a week. To store longer, or if it is particularly humid, store in the refrigerator or freezer.